The sight of that carbon black surface, smooth and solid to the touch, the weight of its shaft firmly caressing my palm; its body the perfect fit for my hand. Holding it close to my face, as if the perfect bend us two – it’s cool persona and my warm skin.
My left hand reaches out to its base like as if caressing its neck just before a strong kiss. The right reaching out to the lens adjusting the view of the scene ahead. Then a pause to relish what we see – it was never just a click. Photography, my first love, this is an ode to thee.
But that there is where I need to rewind. Lost? Why so? No. Lost no more. Adjust the frame and look, closely. At every undulating shadow, that dew drop just about to roll off that fresh vivid leaf. Look closely.
There was a point I remember all those years ago when I thought I faced a block. A photographers block if you will. Why? That urge to lift the camera to my eye, frame and shoot not an urge anymore. A transition of sorts.
I wondered was I leaving the art or was the art leaving me? Then I reasoned with myself – do I have to capture moments with a lens and a camera each time, isn't it enough to record it in my mind’s eye and save it there for eternity? Many agreed with me, the profound need of the statement leaving an incomplete silence in its wake. But I knew that was not all, I was missing something, a reason for this transition.
That’s when writing happened to me. And Photography stepped back, for a while. Through cliche phrases, through oft repeated lines, I pursued; each time expressing more of what I feel.
Me: Clear that clutter (to that special someone, recently)
Him: Yes there are a couple of photographs I can discard.
Me: Why would you do that? I ask.
Him: Keep only memories, memories in the mind.
Me: Oh but its the photographs that come in handy when the mind does not.
Those worlds...a bell rings... in the mindless recesses, when he reiterated the same words I convinced myself and the world into believing. A memory tells us only the things we want to remember, see. A photograph tells us things the way they truly were and that in itself is their purpose.
A writing community gave me feedback – there is so much adventure in your travels they said, tell us all about it, tell us what you see, paint that picture. We’ll know how you feel.
That process of photography – to set your eyes on a single frame, touch every tone of its entity with your vision. Create, compose, may be even construct a scene the way you want it and then record it until eternity – that is what I was always meant to do.
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